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November 14, 2002 - Image 8

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 2002-11-14

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November 14, 2002




. ..... ... . .

Morgan eats
less but takes
care of slump
By Joe Smith
Daily Sports Editor
Courtney Morgan admittedly suffers a letdown
when he tries to take advantage of an all-you-
can-eat buffet.
The 6-foot-3, 298-pound offensive tackle said
his eating skills aren't even on the same level as
fellow lineman David Baas, whom Morgan said
last week downed 13 slabs of
prime rib and two plates of FOOTBALL
crab legs in one sitting.
"All-you-can-eat places aren't Notebook
too good for me because before
I go I'll be really excited and happy, but then I'll
have two plates and I'll be full," Morgan said with
a sigh. "It's disappointing."
But more so than his eating, Morgan was disap-
pointed in his play midway through this season, as
he said he lost focus and got sloppy in his tech-
nique. His holding penalty in the end zone during
the Notre Dame game led to a safety, which ulti-
mately was the difference in the Wolverines' first
loss. After his struggles continued the following
week against Utah, Michigan coach Lloyd Carr
benched him the next two games in favor of red-
shirt freshman Adam Stenavich.
It got so bad for Morgan that he didn't even see
the field in Michigan's dramatic overtime victory
over Penn State at the Big House.
"It was very frustrating," Morgan said. "It was
tough to watch from the sidelines, but I was sup-
portive of my teammates."
But just a few days later, Stenavich suffered an
undisclosed injury in practice that has kept him
out of the past four games and subsequently gave
Morgan a second chance.
"I also looked at it as do or die for me because I
did not want to let my team down," Morgan said.
"I was the next one in there and if I didn't play
well, I had to stay in there because Adam was hurt.
I was really focused, because if I let the team
down, that would have hurt more than anything."
And despite getting beat frequently in the Iowa
game - which Morgan said he's erased from his
mind - the junior has played admirably in the
past two games despite being moved to the right
tackle position.
And Morgan didn't disappoint, making a state-
ment that he isn't ready to give up his startfng'
spot again to a now-healthy Stenavich.
"Courtney had his best game on Saturday,"
Carr said. "He's another guy that is an extremely
good athlete that has great feet and is very tough.
When he came here, he was too heavy and not


Fab Five legacy not as
disposable as banners

Markus Curry's inconsistent play as Michigan's punt returner - including a critical fumble against Iowa - has
coach Lloyd Carr preparing Jermaine Gonzales and Ron Bellamy to fill the role.

strong enough but was a guy in our camp that had
wonderful athletic ability. He played very well,
and hopefully he will continue to do that."
SPECIAL CHANGES: After Carr said he's not satis-
fied with the number of mental errors committed on
punt returns by sophomore Markus Curry, expect
receivers Jermaine Gonzales and Ron Bellamy to
see some action as they've been practicing returns
the past few weeks. In Michigan's 34-9 loss to Iowa
three weeks ago, Curry fumbled a critical punt that
would have given the Wolverines the ball back
down just 10-9. Instead, his turnover led to a
tremendous change in momentum and one of the
Hawkeyes' four straight scores.
Last week against Minnesota, another blunder
by Curry came when he called for a fair catch on
Michigan's 3-yard line. But that wasn't his worst
mistake{according to Carr.
"The one that probably bothered me more was
the one earlier when he felt he should have gone
and caught the ball and he didn't and the ball
rolled 15 yards," Carr said.
SNAKEBITTEN: Carr reaffirmed Monday that jun-

ior linebacker Zach Kaufman is out for the year
after he injured his left knee against Minnesota.
Kaufman is the third Michigan linebacker to be
sidelined for the season, joining Lawrence Reid
and Roy Manning.
"I thought it was a run read so I ran forward,
and it was a pass so I ran back," Kaufman said.
"The running back came to block me and I
jumped over him and landed on my leg wrong."
INJURY UPDATE: An already depleted Michigan
secondary may finally get some good news on
Saturday as Carr expects safety Ernest Shazor
will be fully recovered from a turf toe injury suf-
fered last Tuesday at the team's first practice at
Oosterbaan Fieldhouse this year. Three of Michi-
gan's other top defensive backs - Cato June,
Julius Curry and Zia Combs - have all been
banged up, with June the only one close to
returning. Carr said a statement should be
released next week on the status of Combs.
Junior defensive lineman Alain Kashama
missed the Minnesota game with an injury and
his status is unknown for Saturday.

Some people are just hard to let
go. The University has stripped
down banners and forfeited 113
games. But it hasn't publicly disasso-
ciated itself with Chris Webber, the
Fab Five or any other player who
"embarrassed" the school by taking
And maybe it never will. Michigan
associate athletic director for media
relations Bruce Madej said yesterday
that he's participated in three meetings
on the subject but mentioned that the
University is weeks - if not months
- from making a final decision on
when and if the school will disassoci-
ate itself from them completely.
Despite all the wrongdoings players
like Webber and the Fab Five commit-
ted in their years donning the maize
and blue, their accomplishments and
legacy have done so much for the bas-
ketball program -and still will -
that I wouldn't be surprised if Michi-
gan officials never banish them.
They already had the perfect oppor-
tunity. On one of Michigan's "darkest
days," Athletic Director Bill Martin
almost broke down in tears last week
as he announced the self-imposed
sanctions and tearing down of ban-
ners. But when asked if the University
would welcome back the culpable
players that have caused the school so
much shame, he shied away:
"That's a tough question. Let's put it
this way, I'm not going to send them a
Thanksgiving turkey, if that's what you
mean. I will have to let the passage of
time answer that one."
Why is a public disassociation of
Webber and the Fab Five so tough?
Probably because their legacies remain
so important to Michigan, and the
University doesn't want to risk alienat-
ing any former players or future
recruits if it doesn't have to. After all,
the basketball program rode the wave
of the Fab Five's rock-and-roll star
appeal for nearly a decade through de
facto probation - where the Wolver-
ines still managed to capture top
recruiting classes and remain competi-
tive in the Big Ten (until the Ellerbe
years). Why stop milking them now?
The Fab Five was considered the
greatest recruiting class ever assem-
bled, trendsetters that changed the face
of college basketball on and off the



court and one of the most intriguing
stories in sports in the early '90s.
The players were also called trash-
talking, cocky and immature kids who
were successful and weren't afraid to
let anyone know about it.
Now they're called a "disgrace" and
"embarrassment" by former adminis-
trators such as Don Canham.
"We worked 100 years to do it the
right way, but then you bring the 'Fab
Five' in and it ruins everything," Can-
ham said.
But some would argue the contrary.
Webber helped put Michigan basket-
ball on the national map. Kids from all
over the country admired Webber &
Co., hanging posters of them in their
room and purchasing the baggy shorts
with the block "M" on the side.
And believe me, recruits in the
decade after the Fab Five didn't mar-
vel at Sean Higgins' short-shorts or
Terry Mills sweet jumper - although
those two were members of the last
Michigan national title team in 1989.
They remembered, and probably
still revere Webber and the Fab Five
- despite the indictments, forfeitures
or fallen banners.
Just ask the crown jewel of coach
Tommy Amaker's 2003 recruiting
class, guard Dion Harris.
"Dion grew up watching the Fab
Five and was a big fan of theirs," said
Harris' high school coach Derrick
McDowell. "I think that was a big part
of his initial attraction to Michigan."
Harris was close to eight years
old when Webber played his first
game at Michigan, yet that's the
long-lasting memory he has of
Michigan basketball.
Removed banners and forfeiting
games may hurt guys like Dugan Fife,
James Voskuil and Rob Pelinka. That
was their 15 minutes of fame. Webber,
Rose, Taylor, Traylor and Bullock are
doing just fine making their big bucks
in either the NBA or overseas. They
couldn't probably care less if their
photo is up on the wall at Crisler
Arena or in the media guide.
But if the school banishes these
players from the school - much like
it did to "booster" Ed Martin - there
probably will be no more appearances
for Juwan Howard and Jimmy King at
basketball camps because of guilt by
There will be no more using the
exploits and exposure of Webber &
Co. in recruiting visits. And the Uni-
versity will try to force the memory of
such Michigan legends out of kids'
memory, instead of letting them slow-
ly fade away into the sunset.
Maybe Bill Martin is right. Let the
"passage of time" decide.
The University has let plenty of
time pass already.
Joe Smith can be reached at
Davis and
to return
MADISON (AP) - Wisconsin
quarterback Brooks Bollinger and
running back Anthony Davis are
ready to come back from injuries
and play Saturday against Michigan.
Both missed last week's game
with Illinois - Bollinger had a head

injury andi Davis
had a stab wound
in his leg.
Bollinger was
cleared to play
Tuesday after
missing the 37-20
loss. He was hurt
during a 20-3 loss
to Iowa on Nov. 2.

Jvlon -Thur


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by 0./

Sat 8am
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. . stop by before or after the game!



Saturday, Nov. 16
Michigan vs.
Dominican Republic
National Team
7 p.m.
Crisler Arena
Free admission if you show
your ticket stub from the
football game!
Admission is $4 for adults and
$2 for children & senior citizens. U-M

Friday, Nov. 15
Michigan vs. #7 Minnesota
7 p.m.
Food Drive
Receive half-price admission
($21$1) if you bring a
non-perishable food item.
All food will be donated to
Food Gatherers in Ann Arbor.

#6 Michigan vs.
Lake Superior
Friday, Nov. 15
7:35 p.m.
Saturday, Nov. 16
7:35 p.m.
Yost Ice Arena

Saturday, Nov. 16
Michigan vs. Iowa
7 p.m.
(7e lIsed onFox Spqxts Chicago)






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